Exactly What I Needed

Exactly What I Needed 

By: Nicholas Hann 

I thoroughly enjoyed my AASEP experience. I was able to learn things and push myself in ways I haven’t ever been able to do. As a student, I know I like many aspects and divisions of engineering, but I’m still not quite sure where I stand. Real world experience working side by side with engineers and people of other job titles was exactly what I needed. I went into this internship with a mindset of needing to arrow down my career choices, and I can successfully say I did that. Although I wasn’t just shadowing engineers, I can also say I learned so much from other roles in the company. 

Img 9359      Nicholas Hann

I was selected by Welty Building Company, a construction management firm headquartered in the Akron area. I got a sneak peak of literally almost every single one of their job roles in the company. This spanned anywhere from marketing, to technology aided design, to field work. For me, every single day was different, and I didn’t know what to expect. Sometimes this was terrifying and pushing me through it helped me grow. Even though this experience wasn’t exactly what I was looking for, it was what I needed. This allowed me to see how each part of the company interacts with each other and works together. On top of that, I got to see the individual parts and how they are different from other roles. Unless you have an oversight role in a company where you manage just about everybody, this is a very rare experience, and I took advantage of it to the best of my abilities.

I can confidently say I now have a better insight towards how businesses manage people and their clients. I can also say that the knowledge I have gained in my experience will be put to good use in the future for jobs and colleges.



Leave those Leaves!

Leave those Leaves! 

Before you start raking those leaves, here are some things to consider in leaving them on your yard. There are many benefits to keeping your leaves on your lawn instead of raking and piling them up. Leaves act as a natural fertilizer for your yard and you won’t have to spend money on expensive fertilizers. As they slowly break down, the nutrients in them help the grass and other plants stay healthy. Leaves are also habitats for bugs in the winter months. Caterpillars, which later metamorphosize into butterflies, live in leaf litter and when they are raked away, they no longer have a place to stay. There are many other species of bugs and insects that live in the leaves which bring food for birds as well. 

Another benefit to keeping the leaves in your yard is to keep them out of landfills and waterways. The EPA estimates that in 2015, yard trimmings generated equated to 34.7 million tons which was 13.3% of the municipal solid waste generation. Yard trimmings include grass, brush and leaves and they estimate that 25% of the yard trimmings is leaves alone. Landfills received about 10.8 million tons of the yard trimmings, and that means about 2.7 million tons of leaves went to landfills.

Leaves on Lawn

As mentioned earlier, it is beneficial to keep leaves out of the waterways. While leaves are good nutrients for your yard, they do not carry the same purpose in creeks, streams, and rivers. Excessive decaying leaves take the oxygen from the water and doesn’t leave enough for wildlife. Also, the nutrients and gases produced from the decaying leaves act as pollutants to the water and wildlife. Nutrients in leaves can create algae blooms which are harmful and toxic to human health and aquatic ecosystems.

Leaves that are piled by the streets are more likely to get swept away by rainwater into the sewer systems creating even more problems. Leaves in storm drains, sewer pipes, and sewer systems create clogs in the system leading too increased chances of flooding. As they travel through the pipes, leaves also go to the Water Reclamation Facility and get stuck in the grates. In this case someone must clean all the leaves out of the grates to keep them from causing a clog.

In conclusion, the most beneficial thing you can do with your leaves is keep them on your lawn for the added nutrients and to help keep them away from the streets, so they aren’t in the waterways. If the leaves pile up it is advised to mow over them to create more of a mulch in your yard. Greener yards will be in your future! 

Benefits of Complete Streets

Traditional roads and streets were built for one form of transportation – motor vehicles. Complete streets change this idea to allow for multimodal transportation and make it safe for every type of traveler. With the implementation of complete streets, there is a more inclusive environment for pedestrians, bicyclists, and those who use transit regularly. This allows for better accessibility to residences, schools, parks, offices, grocery stores, and so much more to create economic growth for the community. These streets also encourage a healthier lifestyle by creating a space for safe walking and biking. If more people choose to bike or walk instead of drive, there will be a decreased amount of car emissions, which in turn improves air quality in the city.

Increased transportation choices, economic growth, and increased safety for all users are only a few of the benefits to complete streets. More include improved health from more walking and biking and greenhouse gas reduction. However, there are also fringe benefits of complete streets of reducing traffic, slowing traffic down in neighborhoods, and creating a greater connection in the community. New connections are formed in the community by just having more people walking or biking together.

In the case of Aqueduct Street, there were even more added benefits in the design. With permeable pavers, the use of native greens on the devil strips, and sections of rocks at the end of the street, a natural form of treating water is created. Rainwater that would normally be traveling to the sewer system and the Water Reclamation Facility, is now traveling through these natural filters. Green infrastructure including bioretention, rain gardens, and underground storage chambers are also implemented on Aqueduct Street. Keeping this water out of the sewer system will help reduce overflows and can help mitigate flood risk by slowing down water in the area. Green infrastructure also has benefits of improving air quality with helping to reduce air temperatures and removing air pollutants through the vegetation. Finally, green infrastructure allows new habitats for wildlife and reduction in erosion and sedimentation.

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My Experience at FirstEnergy

My Experience at FirstEnergy

By: Jason Do

My internship was one of the best experiences I have ever had when it comes to careers and work. Before my internship, I didn’t really understand much about FirstEnergy. All I really knew was “Something something, electricity, bring power to my house please.” This internship has taught me that there is much more that goes on behind the scenes, such as preparing the project, designing the equipment and power lines, planning for contingencies, operating the breakers, and even taking care of the budget.

My internship was split into 8 departments within 8 weeks. In each department, I learned something new and how it contributed to FirstEnergy as a whole. One of my favorite parts was getting to go to the Akron Control Center, or ACC. The control room looked like something out of a spy or government agency film. The walls were embedded with several massive screens showing FE’s transmission grid, and there were multiple computers on each operator’s desk. The room was a bit dark, only slightly lit up by dim lights and the light from the computers and screens.

I also got to go both out in the field and in the office with my internship. In the field, I assisted the employees with measuring “guy lines”, commissioning equipment, and learning about electrical lines. While in the office, I got to learn about how FirstEnergy runs, as well as what it feels like to work there.

Surprisingly, I found the internship to be really fun! I had thought it would be very serious and strict, but everyone was nice to me while I went through the program. They treated me as if I were just another employee, and I felt that FirstEnergy in general treats their workers very well. Despite not having much work in one or two of the departments, I still found the internship to be fun, informative, and exciting!

All in all, this was an incredible opportunity. I learned a plethora of things involving electricity and the workplace, and this experience will stick with me throughout my life. Thanks to this experience, I am also more confident about what I want to major in college: Electrical Engineering. I am very grateful to both FE and AASEP for allowing me the chance to expand my horizons and learn what it means to intern under FirstEnergy. I would like to thank Terry Malone, Dewayne Edwards, Jonathan Simmons, and everyone else who made this possible.

Field Work and Office Experience

Field Work and Office Experience

By: Keeremat Melaiye

Field Work

Img 9331Keeremat Melaiye, pictured second from right

I used to be really excited about field work. In my first week at FirstEnergy, I was placed into the Transmission and Substation Design Department. I was given a brief introduction about how electricity is delivered into people’s homes and the design behind the materials that they use. Afterwards, I was taken to a substation near one of their other buildings. It was fascinating to see the equipment used in person and how it works. I was able to touch the breakers that were not activated and realized how enormous and heavy each piece of equipment was.  Later that week, I went to another substation with the same department, and was measuring ‘guy lines’ with a rangefinder. Despite the scorching heat, I had fun learning what they do at the substation. It was until I got home that on my shoulder, I found...a tick! Another thing I have noticed in field work is that there is a lot of traveling. When I was in the Project Management Department, I was told to travel all the way to a substation in Mansfield using my own car, which took me an hour on the expressway. When I got to my destination, I spent 15-20 minutes in that area before having to drive to another substation, in which I spent around 10 minutes in. I realized that travelling long distances only to spend a short amount of time in those locations was exhausting and not something I would be interested in doing often.

Office Work

For most of the internship, I was not given work to do. I would shadow a couple of employees each day and learn what they do in their department, however, it didn’t take long for them to explain their role in the department and most of the employees were busy with their work. This resulted in the other interns and I having nothing to do for periods of time.  One of our supervisors noticed this and decided to give all the high school interns a challenge. The challenge that the other interns and I were given was to create an “app” using VBA Excel to solve a problem relating to FirstEnergy. I was struggling with the program because I am not used to coding programs, but it was a great experience for me to do something new. My idea was to create a code that would help users to track the mileage quickly and easily. As I am not done with the internship yet, it is still in the process of completion; however, I will be presenting my idea to the judges and competing with the other interns towards the end of the internship.



Learning the Pathway to My Career

Learning the Pathway to My Career

By: Maliyah Ramsey

Maliyah Ramsey

The All Akron Student Engineering Program taught me useful material that related back to professionalism in the workplace. I learned how to properly greet people, how to properly eat at a professional lunch meeting, how to properly dress business casual and how to brand myself. This program helped me learn how I’ll be able to accomplish the goal of being successful outside of school. They have given me the opportunity of being part of an internship which has helped me learn the pathway I wanted to take in my future career. This program not only helped me with professionalism but has also helped me know the person I am. With the help of Mr. Simmons and Ms. Halasa they have helped me brand myself and notice different aspects that I have never seen in me before. They helped me notice my strengths and listed them down. After we were done, we pointed out the key points of what made me the person I am and summed it up to a   one-minute speech called an elevator speech. We had the chance to go over our speech with others and was even able to present it out in front of all the companies.This program was very effective and taught me a variety of skills that I do plan on using in the future. 


Prepared for My Internship and Future

Prepared for My Internship and Future

By: Milan Radonjich 

I am thankful that the AASEP was not only going to provide a summer internship in engineering, but also train me to be ready for it. The workshops that were held throughout the program were excellent! They helped me develop and improve certain soft skills that are important in the workplace. Every presenter was very interesting and brought something special to the table. We learned about personal branding, goal setting, table etiquette, proper attire, and many other topics. Towards the end of each workshop, we were proposed a challenge and had to split into groups. This made me interact with new people from all over Akron. These challenges were fun and drove us to think critically and creatively. As the year went on, I found myself much more prepared for my summer internship due to these speakers, presentations, and challenges.

Img 8160      Img 7807

Milan Radonjich, pictured second from the left           Milan Radonjich, looking down and pointing

Confidence in Engineering

Confidence in Engineering 

By: Hunter Huey 

I have been considering being a mechanical engineer for most of my life at this point. I have of course gone back and forth between that and other career paths, but I have always returned to the idea of mechanical engineering. At this point in my life, I think that I want to for sure go down that path of engineering, but I do not entirely know what specific field to go into. I joined this program in the hopes that I would get a better idea of what I would want to do. Now, I do not have all experience that everyone else who is a part of the program might (on account that I joined very late), but I have gained valuable experience from the program. Both the program before the internship and the actual internship have given me plenty of information and experiences.

I was late to the AASEP program and did not attend a meeting until around March, so I was only able to attend three or four meetings. From those meetings though, I was able to get plenty of information about business and how to properly conduct myself in a business environment. While a lot of it was not necessarily engineering related it still was valuable information to have and I can use for the rest of my life. While there was not necessarily a lot of engineering information going on (from what I experienced at least), the information that was there was eye opening. When I first joined the program, I was still between engineering and forensic science. I knew that forensic was not a very easy field to get into due to there not being many positions that would be open and would probably require moving somewhere to get a job, which was not great but I did not know anything about the openings of being an engineer so I still held onto the idea of being a forensic scientist. When we were shown all the participating companies for the program, my reservations were completely wiped away. Being shown that there were tons of companies that were all local, gave me plenty of confidence that getting into engineering would be the right thing to do.

Now for the actual internship, that has, in a way, made me more indecisive on what path of engineering to go down. Since I was picked by the City of Akron, I have been around civil engineers, which is similar in some aspects, but in action, is different. The thing is though, that civil is not something I had considered before, but it does seem fairly interesting. I just need more information to help me make my decision. Granted, I still plan on going into mechanical engineering, but would like to feel more confident that I’m going to the field that I want. I have some time though as I have learned that college courses for civil and mechanical are similar, so I’m not very worried about it.

Strengthened Skills

Strengthened Skills

By: Hunter Jones 

For my internship through AASEP, I worked with Thomarios. Thomarios has many different aspects to their company including industrial coating, powder coating, and construction. When I was interning there, I worked in the IT department with Mr. Frutchey and Ryan. The IT department was separated from the construction, and for the most part, we did not do much with the construction, industrial coating, and powder coating departments.

On the first two days, I had the task of preparing laptops and desktops for the use of other people at the company. This process involved first making sure the laptops and desktops each had the cords that are needed. I then had to update windows and specific software on each of the computers, which took the bulk of the time for this project. Some of the computers had problems, which I needed to diagnose and fix so they are in working condition.

The main task I had to do is display an image on a Mac II. I spent a lot of time trying to get a raspberry pi to accomplish this, but because I did not have the correct parts I needed to convert the signal nor the time to get them, I was not able to finish the specific project.

When I wasn’t working on either of the other 2 projects, there were still other things that I had to do. I was able to help people with other technical questions when they arrived. I also spent time on CBT Nuggets, a website with courses on various IT topics. The course I finished was on SQL, which is a query language used in database management. Also, during the last week I was able to visit various construction sites and clients which allowed me to see what it is like being on a construction site.

Overall my internship at Thomarios gave me experience in the workforce and I learned a lot from it. I learned both about IT and construction work which helped strengthen my problem-solving skills which are extremely important in IT. It also allowed me to witness what IT employees do daily and help them on their projects.

Insights for My Future

Insights for My Future 

By: Shelley Bradshaw


As my time at Prime AE comes to a close, I am very thankful for the experiences and knowledge I have gained with the help of those in the office with me. I have seen many different sides of engineering and it has helped me to further understand what I want to do with the rest of my life. One of the things I liked the most was visiting a project site they are working on. It was nice to see what really happens on a job site, and to see all the preparation that goes into a project. This internship has also taught me that, although doing things in the office might not be the most fun, it is necessary to make sure everything pans out smoothly and goes nicely on the site. Another thing that I was introduced to is AutoCAD. They showed me how to draw using the program and gave me real life applications where it would help draw up a plan.  Finally, going on the tour of the water and wastewater plants gave me a new perspective on what goes into treating water. It made me realize that I take the water at my house for granted, and that some people work 24/7 to ensure the water I get is safe and clean and reliable to use. This internship has been a great experience and I am so glad that I was given the opportunity to experience something like this before I graduate high school!